It’s Finally Time to Buy an Electric Lawn Mower
I spend a good bit of time looking for ways to lessen my family’s impact on the environment. Sometimes that means we need to do without something, such as using less water, but this isn’t always the case. Going Green can also have benefits beyond the environment and make your life a little better or a wee bit easier. Today let’s look at one of those mutually beneficial items: battery powered electric lawn mowers.
Though people have been enjoying cordless power tools for quite some time, they still shy away from heavy duty items. It’s hard to blame them. Battery powered electric motors just weren’t up to the task; not enough torque and/or not enough battery life. Electric mowers have been around for a while, but that either meant having to drag around and not chop up a power cord or using a slow to charge and heavy lead acid car type battery. Good news, technology has finally reached the level where an electric mower is an easy alternative to their traditional gas counterparts; which is mostly due to advances in lithium ion batteries.
So what makes the new crop of electric mowers a better alternative? The main factor is convenience. Instead of storing gas cans in the garage, all you need to do is pop the battery in the charger. My main battery takes a mere half hour to charge and in return I get 45 minutes or more of mowing time; enough too clear the front yard and part of the back on my half acre lot. There are larger capacity batteries available and some models hold two. Another big advantage is I don’t have to worry about any engine maintenance either. And, of course, the only pollution generated is at the power plant end. Let’s look at some more advantages and disadvantages of an electric mower.
- Lighter than gas mowers
- Much quieter
- Nearly zero pollution, only electricity
- No engine maintenance (gas, oil change, spark plugs, etc.)
- No gas cost or storage
- Batteries will lose charge quickly if mowing tall field grass
- Need to have a place to charge battery or have a backup handy
- Cost is a bit more than gas push mowers
So, should I run out and buy an electric mower? You should consider an electric model if you:
- Want to go green. Cuts fuel usage, oil, and air pollution
- Have a yard under 1 acre
- Would rather not spend time on maintenance
- Would like a much quieter mower
What’s on the market? There are several companies offering battery powered mowers, many of which can be found at retailers like Lowe’s ad Home Depot. Kobalt, EGO, Ryobi, Worx, just to name a few. Prices are slightly higher than comparable gas models, but then again you don’t need to buy gas or do any yearly maintenance. Larger capacity batteries are hitting the market now and with that are the first self-propelled models. Here are a few tips on buying a battery powered mower.
- Commit to a product line. Most will also have trimmers, leaf blowers, chain saws, etc. which all use the same type of interchangeable batteries.
- Don’t go cheap, you’re likely getting something with inferior battery life and power.
- Compare the batteries specifications between mowers. Looks at aH (amp hours equal cutting time) and voltage (motor power). Find a good balance for price.
- Check on extra/replacement battery price. Buying additional items, like a trimmer, pays off here.
- As always, read up on customer reviews to find the best brands and models.
Do you have a battery powered mower or are considering one? I’ve been very happy with mine and would love to hear from others. Feel free to post in the comments section below or on our social media channels.